What are some healthy foods for kids?
Get your child to eat a variety of plant foods! Those are the ones that have the most nutrition in them. So what does that mean? Any examples? Of course.
How about bananas, apples, oranges, mango, fresh juices, fruit smoothies (without milk), root vegetable soup, red lentil stew, lettuce wraps and falafel?
Or any dishes based on vegetables.
Veggies of different colors are great because they all have their own way of helping the body.
Cucumber, celery, beets... very good when you want to boost mineral intake.
Your child should have some every day.
The amount doesn't have to be huge but find a way to get them to have at least a little.
How to do it?
You can for example cut some greens into tiny pieces and mix them into a soup or into rice or whatever it is you are making. That way they have no way to choose not to eat it.
Olives are also great. They are high in calcium. Rinse them with water for a while before serving, or soak them for some time - to remove most of the salt.
Food Groups for Kids
In my opinion, the most important food groups to focus on are the healthy foods for kids that I talked about i the video - fruits, vegetables, nus, seeds, legumes (like lentils and chickpeas), and gluten free grains.
In my cooking I use both dried spices and fresh herbs. Sometimes, spices can be the secret ingredient to an amazing dish! I use dill, mint and parsley often, but also cilantro. It does have a distinct taste that not everyone loves, so you can experiment and see if your children could like it or get used to it, or maybe not.
Did you know that compounds within cilantro is able to help transport heavy metals out of the body? That's why it pays off to have some once in a while.
Other plant foods can do the same though, which is great.
When my child heard this he told me to put a whole bunch of it in our soup. He also said that he feels bad for one of his uncles who doesn't like cilantro (also called coriander).
Now how did your kids get those metals into their body in the first place? Usually from food. It's hard to avoid these days. The air is polluted and the particles in the polluted air falls down into the ground where our food is grown. If interested, you can read more here: www.nrdc.org/health/kids/ocar/chap4.asp
Dried spices also bring so much goodness with them, both taste-wise and health-wise. Turmeric is one of those super spices you should try to add to the dishes you make, almost daily. Oregano and thyme are also great.
If you buy certified organic produce you are a little better off because one of the rules is that the produce has to be grown far away from busy roads.
Did you know that bell peppers also are super healthy? Very good for the kiddos.
They contain so much vitamin C and healthy micro nutrients!
But so do all vegetables and fruits too! Check this out...
If you want to get your kids to eat healthy, but they don't happen to be so eager to do that themselves, an idea would be to...
- make yummy stuff like blended bananas and frozen strawberries with a handful of something green!
For example lemon balm, baby spinach or mint.
Some kids won't eat or drink anything that has a green color.
So as a solution to that you can put the smoothie in a dark glass or a cup to hide the color.
Or add a tiny bit of beetroot to the smoothie and it will become red!
One amazing topic I have done some research on is brain food for kids. Hope you find it interesting too!
And here I write about how to buy healthy foods for kids on a budget - Nutrition, Healthy Eating for Kids
I have this nutrition facts book at home that I love. The other day I found one food there that seems to be crazily nutrient dense.
The dried rose hip fruit!
It is high in potassium, carotene, riboflavin, iron and vitamin C.
Unfortunately rose hip can't be bought just anywhere. But it is quite easy to find rose hip powder in health food stores, or the tea. I drink the tea quite often. my child does too.
The wild rose hip fruit grows in gardens and forests of the northern parts of the world, but honestly they don't taste very good... But hey, many healthy foods are a bit sour.
When you sign up for my newsletter, you get my healthy foods for kids list as a gift. The food items listed on there is very nutritious. You can sign up here if you like, and the list will come straight to your inbox.
Some foods definitely don't make it on to the healthy foods for kids list. For example the obvious ones, like hot dogs or soda and the rest of the junk. But now we have a new one that has been proven to be unhealthy, and that is pizza! I just saw this today:
I can see their point. I mean the pizza bread isn't any healthier than regular white bread, which is the worst, often made with bleached flour (at least in the US), and it makes you constipated.
The flour a regular pizza is made of is of course not whole grain and also not organic.
But you could always make your own pizza at home with organic ingredients or even make a raw food pizza, and then it could be turned into a healthy meal.
When my son was younger I used to buy frozen vegetarian pizza for us once in a while. Until I one day read the label on the box. There it said the dough contained hydrogenated oil. After that I stopped buying it.
More about junk food and bad food for kids here
Read about super foods for kids here
And about healthy drinks for kids here
More info on Healthy Food for Kids here, where we discuss the importance of nutrition for children.
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